'Simple Moments are Sometimes the Best Moments'

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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

305. Cucumber Soup with Pepper

I cooked this 'Cucumber Soup' last week, to eat with my 'Roasted Chicken'.

Well, today hubby brought home some more cucumbers.

I cooked the soup the same style again, on Zu's request, she said,' Sedap, makan panas-panas, Alif pun suka makan ya..'

My family can't do without a soup dish in a meal. They like to sip hot soups when eating rice. So sometimes my soups come down to as simple as this!

My Simple Cucumber Soup

Preparation :-

1) Skin and then cut the cucumbers in small strips as above.
2) Clean and drip dry in a sieve.
3) Ground one small shallot and one garlic.
4) Saute the grounded shallot and garlic.
5) Add water (how much soup I want).
6) When boiled, add the cucumbers.
7) Boil until cucumbers are soft.
8) Add a pinch of shrimp paste to the soup.
9) Add salt and ajinomoto to taste.
10) Add a few drops of pepper powder.
11) Bring to boil, then off fire.

Eat the cucumber soup while it is hot.

I wonder if you ever cook a soup dish as simple as this!

p/s. Later hubby brought in these 2 cucumbers into the house. He told me he forgot all about them, which he left in his motorbike's basket.

He told me these two were given by a friend :) And another type of cucumber!


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Monday, June 28, 2010

304. So...

Okay... so now I am a member of the SARAWAK BLOGGERS. (click on sarawak bloggers to view)

I sent in the application form for membership a couple of weeks ago and I've just discovered they have approved me and had put my blog in the list as CASUAL BLOGGERS (my blog no.63) which means bloggers who has been blogging in less than 2 years.

Hmm..I do not know why I wanted to join when I filled the application form online. At that time I have no apparent reason other than I am curious to find out what has been and is going on with the Sarawak Bloggers community. I found out most of the core team are from Kuching. I am not sure if any did come from other cities or town in Sarawak(as I haven't really gone through most of the core team's blogs to find out).

I am also a member of the MIRI BLOGGERS (click on miri bloggers to view). I joined their membership quite (can't remember exactly when) a while ago. I was hoping to get to know a lot of other Miri bloggers through their site. Right now I admit I've got to know a lot more bloggers and had become friends with bloggers from Semenanjung rather than bloggers from my own hometown. Not that it bothers me one bit, in fact I am so glad because I discovered the people from Semenanjung are as friendly as I want them to be! And I thank God I got to know a lot of their different kinds of cultures, especially FOOD! :)

I think sharing recipes and especially comments are the first step that we bloggers can get to know one another and become friends. It is a good feeling when I have a comment written by a blogger friend on any one of my posts. I will take the time to answer his or her comment and I hope that will show her or him that I am pleased, happy that she or he has stopped by.

Wouldn't you be?

With that in mind, I will then go to her or his blog to read more about what's been written there and will take my time to give a comment on any of his or her posts.

I believe if I continue to do so every now and then I will soon gain another blogger friend!

And that will make me richer because I have a new friend!

Do you do the same thing? :)


Sunday, June 27, 2010

303. Before, After and In Betweens

It is Sunday.

This morning Zu, Alif, myself and Noormy went to have breakfast at Pakcik Wan Cafe (click on pakcik wan cafe to view) in Lutong.

Coming home at 10am we noticed the sky was very cloudy and in minutes it had started to drizzle. Since Aya was going to use the car at 1130 am, I told Noormy I'd better send her to work first at 1030am. It's difficult when comes rainy days as she rides on her motorbike to Marriot Resort & Spa to work each day.

It was quite a rush rush thing for me as, soon after sending Noormy, I need to cook 'Chicken Curry' for lunch as well as for Aya to bring to work with her rice. And I did. Just in time, to pack it in a small container for Aya before she drove off!

Next, I need to prepare for the afternoon selling my 'Cendol'.

But that's not what I was about to talk about. What I want to tell in this post is about deserts, things I eat before meals, after meals or in between meals :)

These 'Asam Epal' come from my own mango tree at the back of my kitchen. I like to cut them like this, put them to cool in my fridge and later eat them, usually after my meals or just before lunch. They are delicious, with a taste of a bit sour and more to the sweet.

My Mangoes or 'Asam Epal' (they are shaped like an apple)

I love yogurt! Do you take them too? I buy a cup of this 'Marigold' low fat yogurt at any supermarket and when I want to eat it I slice a red or a green apple into cubes to eat it with. I take this when I am too hungry when past my breakfast time. This gives me energy and it contain lots of protein, calcium, riboflavin and vitamin B.


Sometimes I have 'Banana Split' for desert, if THAT can be called a Banana Split LOL..
Still, I love the taste of icecream on the bananas. My favorite flavors of course are chocolate, vanilla and strawberry :)

Banana Split

Lately my son Farouk has been bringing home 'Buah Sukun' (bread fruit) almost every weekend. So I sliced and fried them in a flour dough and eat them still hot with some chilli sauce. I love 'buah sukun', it is one of my favorite and nowadays this bread fruit is rare at the 'Tamu Muhibbah'.

Fried Buah Sukun

Lastly, sometimes I turned to my 'Cendol' (click on cendol to view) when I am feeling thirsty in the evenings. In between selling, i either make myself a small bowl of 'cendol' or a small bowl of red beans. Just yummy!

I hope you all have had a wonderful Sunday!


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Saturday, June 26, 2010

302. An Angel Friend Blogger Award

I have been awarded with this very cute 'Angel Friends Blogger Award' by one of my very cute angel friends named TK (click here to go to her blog). Thanks TK... for always being such an angel to Mak Isah too :)

I think you are the first blogger friend I had who first called me 'Mak Isah' and for that I feel very honored and appreciated. Lately, a few bloggers had started to call me 'Mak Isah' and this kinda make me feel very much at home and I like it :)

At the back of my mind I have honestly been thinking whether to change the 'Puan Isah' to 'Mak Isah' he he... What do you all think? :p

I know too, TK was the first who had 'followed' mak isah. I noticed too that she (TK) always was the first to comment in any of my posts (where she finds the time of course :p

And for all these TK has made mak isah feel very much at home in this blog world. Thank you TK!

For those of you who doesn't get to know TK yet do visit her here (click here to go to her blog). She is a teacher who loves especially to take pictures of sceneries and her pictures at her blog are fabulous! And I think she likes Japanese products too LOL.. (correct mak isah if am wrong yea?)

I have fun knowing her and I hope you all will too!

Love you TK!

Friday, June 25, 2010

301. Knight and Day

Cameron Diaz and Tom Cruise

Yesterday evening, my 2 girls and I went to see 'Knight and Day' at the Cinemaplex at Bintang Mega Mall.
The hero was Tom Cruise (Suri's father LOL) and the heroin was one of my favourite actress Cameron Diaz :)

Actually I don't like to see Tom Cruise act and I went because Cameron has been one of my favourite actress since she played in the film 'There's Something About Mary' in 1998. That film was her highlight. I think I saw that film 2 or 3 times LOL..

I love romantic comedy movies and 'Knight and Day' was not only that but full of actions too, even though in 'Knight and Day' things happen much too fast and quickly for us normals to take in!

Back to Tom Cruise, after watching him in 'Knight and Day' he seemed more mature, handsome, tougher which gave him the sexier look with his abs showing in one or two of the scenes :p He looked so much more a family man now. Yet I still don't like to see his acting. Give me action thriller actors like Bruce Willis and Sylvester Stallone any time!

Bruce Willis

Sylvester Stallone

I give 'Knight and Day' a rating of 6 out of 10. Truthfully, I enjoyed the movie, it made me laughed.

If you have the chance see it with your spouses, best friends but not with small children.

Have a Lovely Day Everyone!


Thursday, June 24, 2010

300. Cekodok Pisang Pisang

My family and I called this bananas 'Pisang Pisang'. I asked hubby again when he brought them home, he too and again said it is called 'Pisang Pisang'. I was just wondering if there is another name for it :p
It is sweet and smells nice and I like it. I even ate them with my ice cream. But too long (about 2 days) on the table some of the banana's (as you can see in the picture) skin turned brownish.

So to avoid them to turning too brownish and 'un eatable', I make some 'Cekodok Pisang'. I am actually out of practice doing this. It has been quite a while since I last make 'Cekodok Pisang'. It seemed and sound simple but I was soon to discover it was not so....

Pisang Pisang

So far so good...

as I began to slice the bananas into a bowl and pour in some plain flour, add a pinch of salt, a tablespoon of sugar, a full teaspoon of Baking Powder and gradually adding plain water to it to make a dough.

Picking up the dough from the side of the bowl with a tablespoon, I dropped it into a pan with hot cooking oil, continously doing so until the pan is full of droplets of 'Cekodok' dough.

But I wasn't satisfied with the result.


Okay fine, the taste was as good as I want it to be but the shape of the 'Cekodok Pisang' weren't as round as I want them to be!

I asked myself what went wrong. I thought maybe I didn't leave the dough to stand for a certain time and let the baking powder work on it before cooking.

I decided not to finish frying the whole dough (even when Aya kept asking for more he he) but let it stand for an hour or so before continue frying.

And this time my 'Cekodok Pisang' looked like this :) (*wide smile*)

A couple of minutes ago I read in a blog, (click on blog to view) the lady used her 5 fingers to drop the 'Cekodok' dough into the frying pan :)



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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

299. Roasting My Chicken

It was hot today and yesterday, the weather touching 31 degrees. I was busy with my 'Cendol' (click on cendol to view :) To me and Zu, hot days means good business for us, and when we are busy, it weren't just catering for the customers, we had to be on the watch what items we had were 'quite' running out. So last night, I crashed early due to tiredness he he...

This morning I decided to cook something simple that do not take so much of my time in the kitchen. That way, even after my 'Cendol' business , I won't get so tired when night comes and I can do my blogging before going to sleep.

Yesterday evening hubby brought home five whole chicken. My fridge is full of them! The idea of roasting one of them came into my mind. I roasted one and it's simple and healthy :)

To prepare :-

Cut one whole chicken at its breast and throw away whatever not from it's stomach from there. Clean, wash and drip dry on to a siever for 5 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile ground one 'Bombay' onion and a 2" ginger.

Marinate the chicken with the 2 ingredients plus some turmeric powder.

Add salt and ajinomoto.

Sprinkle some pepper.

Place the chicken in a square baking tin (8x8 inches)

I use my black oven which has heat on top and at the bottom of it to roast my chicken.
This will take 90 minutes at a temperature of 180 degrees.

The top heat will give the top of the chicken a brown nice colour when cooked.

My Black Oven (that's what I called it :p

Like this!

My Homemade Roasted Chicken

The bell of my black oven will go 'ting' after 90 minutes. I let the chicken cool down for half an hour. By 12noon when it's ready for lunch, I asked Zu(she's quite an expert) to cut the chicken up and placed them nicely on to a large glass bowl with cover on.

To go with the chicken, I simply cooked a simple 'Cucumber Soup' :p

A bowl of my Homemade Cucumber Soup. Mind you, the cucumber are from my 'Rojak' stall LOL...

And to eat with my cut roasted chicken, I eat it with a small bowl of dark soy sauce added with some lime juice (limau kasturi) and lots of 'cili padi'!


Sunday, June 20, 2010

298. Laksa Penang

Besides 'Laksa Sarawak' (click on laksa sarawak to view) I love to eat 'Laksa Penang'. It has been a long time since I cook this Laksa.

Last week on our stroll to the 'Seberkas Pasar Malam' (click on seberkas pasar malam to view) Aya has been looking for the stall which sells 'Laksa Penang' but couldnt find it as they closed for that night.

So today I decided to try my hands on it! I cooked 'Laksa Penang' or as some called it 'Asam Laksa'. I think it is also called this because dried slices of tamarind fruit (Asam Gelugor) are used to give added sourness to the gravy. And it is called 'Laksa Penang' because it's origin is from Pulau Pinang (Penang Island).

I can't help thinking how clever are the people of Pulau Pinang for inventing this marvellous dish!

My Homemade 'Laksa Penang' gravy

Even the noodles to make this laksa is special. This is how the noodles looks like. I can only get this in the mornings, either at the supermarkets or at the 'Tamu Muhibbah' in my hometown.

2 important ingredients 'must add' to the stock of 'Laksa Penang' are one, the Torch Ginger (Bunga Kantan) and the other is 'Daun Kesom' (polygonum leaves).

Torch Ginger or Bunga Kantan

Daun Kesom or Polygonum Leaves

Ingredients :-

a) 12 medium size mackerel or Ikan Kembong
b) 12 cups water
c) 20 -25 dried chillies - scalded and left to stand
d) 1 stalk lemon grass - cut the bulb in small pieces
e) 5 shallots
f) 1/2 tablespoon belacan (shrimp paste)
g) 1 stalk of Bunga Kantan
h) 2 stalks of Daun Kesom
i) 5 pieces of dried tamarind fruit (asam gelugor)
j) 1 cucumber
k) 1/2 a pineapple
l) 2 big onions
m) A couple of stalks of lettuce
n) 3 limes (limau kasturi)
o) salt and ajinomoto to taste

For the gravy :-

1) Boil the 10 cups of water in a pot.
2) Blend items c) to f) with a little water, add these into the pot.
3) Cook the fish, debone and blend the flesh.
4) Add the blended fish into the pot as well.
5) Let it boil.

6) Add in the stalk of Bunga Kantan (cut into half), Daun Kesom and the Asam Gelugor.
7) Meanwhile boil the fish bones in another pot with some water, then sieve & put the bones away.
8) Add the water from the sieved bones into the boiling gravy.
9) Let the gravy boiled for another 30 -40 minutes.
10) Add salt and ajinomoto to taste.

For the vegetable garnishment :-

I have from anticlockwise, sliced pineapple, sliced big onions, sliced limes, sliced lettuce and sliced cucumber.

To serve, put some of the laksa noodles in a bowl, add the vegetable garnishments on top of it. Then ladle the gravy over the noodles.

This was hubby's bowl of 'Laksa Penang', I added one sliced boiled egg for him :p

And this was mine! with more sliced pineapple ( I like!) and some extra sliced cili padi!

Enjoy! Even my son said my laksa gravy was tasty! What more can I ask? LOL..

I hope you all have had a wonderful weekend!


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Saturday, June 19, 2010

297. A Day Off

I took a day off from selling 'Cendol' (click on cendol to view) yesterday. Zu helped me cleaned (for the last time) my small new house for rent (click on rent to view) as my new tenant moves in this Sunday. Alif came along too. He slept in the car for his afternoon nap with the air conditioning on while we cleaned up the place.

We finished around 4pm. I remembered we were there at the house at 130pm. That was two and a half hours!

Tired and hungry I said to Zu let's drive down to town to eat 'Nasi Lalapan' at 'Muara Restaurant (click on nasi lalapan to view). We reached the place around 430pm. Imagine, lunch at 430pm? he he...

Muara Restaurant is situated at the waterfront near the Miri River. This restaurant is very popular with it's 'Nasi Lalapan'. Almost any customers regardless of race eat with their fingers here :p

It was good to sit back with the breeze from the river blowing on our faces even though we were dirty and dusty LOL...

Muara Restaurant

Views of Miri River in front of the Restaurant. If you can see closely (just click on my pictures to enlarge), there are few cars with people sitting on the ground just enjoying themselves eating tit bits. The other side can be reached by driving there using another long road via Piasau Bridge.

Only Alif seemed fresh after his one and a half hour sleep in the car earlier on :)

Zu, as tired as I am :) You can see the river behind her

We sat there for an hour slowly eating and enjoying our food. Just before getting into the car, we brought Alif to see the river. He loves watching the water.

We head for home at 5.45pm, our stomachs full, longing for a long hot bath yet happy we spent the day together.


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